Glasses of champagne
Image credit: <a href="https://pxhere.com/en/photo/834570">Pxhere</a>

It is customary in numerous countries to welcome the new year with a champagne toast at midnight. Although we frequently had real champagne-from-Champagne when we were living in France, here in San Diego we typically choose a much less expensive local approximation—a California sparkling white wine. I hereby give you license to define “champagne” as loosely as you see fit today; no need to be a French wine snob. For that matter, you can put some sparkling apple juice in a flûte and call it champagne if you like. Because, come on, it’s New Year’s Eve and you do need to get at least a bit of sleep, right?